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Looking for an adventure in the Alps? The Swiss district Lauterbrunnen and the village of the same name may be just what you’re after. With a landscape characterised by towering mountains, natural wonders, and picturesque towns, Lauterbrunnen is one of Switzerland’s top destinations. Get out in the fresh Alpine air and indulge in a few amazing activities!

Explore the Town and Valley around Lauterbrunnen

When you arrive in Lauterbrunnen, the first thing you’ll want to do is explore the town. Set in an idyllic valley, this typical Alpine village boasts row after enchanting row of classic chalet-style houses and lush green fields. Take a moment to relax in one of the main street’s numerous cafés and bars. During the summer, we recommend enjoying the minigolf course and the swimming pool. The town is also worth a visit in winter, when it is transformed into a scenic snowscape.

One of the city’s main attractions is its iconic church. It is typical and charming, but still has a modest feel to it. The interior is wonderfully preserved and showcases stunning stained-glass windows. It’s definitely worth a stop and even makes for a stunning photo opportunity with the crashing waterfall in the background.

Beyond the town, snow-capped mountains rise up and the valley truly begins. Lauterbrunnen is famous for its many waterfalls – it isn’t known as “The Valley of 72 Waterfalls” for nothing! There are several small trails and pathways that take you straight to Staubbach Falls and Trümmelbach Falls.

Paraglide above Lauterbrunnen

We’ve talked a lot about enjoying the sensational Swiss views, but there’s a way to make them even more thrilling… how about soaring high above the towering Alps? This once-in-a-lifetime paragliding experience will have you hopping off the ridge and swooping through the valley all the way down to Lauterbrunnen.

The best thing? You don’t need any prior experience. An experienced glider can strap you on for a tandem jump, unless you’re skilled enough to take the leap yourself.

Of course, paragliding isn’t mandatory. We watched many people take off, but never did it ourselves. Our excuse is that one of our mates was scared of heights! We spared him the experience and had a lot of fun watching others. Secretly, we’re dreaming about going back to try it out ourselves…

Take the cable way to Schilthorn Viewing Deck

For one of the best views in Lauterbrunnen, visit the Schilthorn viewing deck. If you’re feeling sporty, you can hike the 2,960 metres to the top. However, we would recommend taking the cable way so that you can enjoy the awesome views. Whichever way you get there, once you reach the mountaintop you will be able to enjoy an epic view of “The Big Three” mountains Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau.  If the scene up top feels familiar to you, it may be déjà vu from the 1989 James Bond adventure “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”. The summit’s starring role in the film serves as an additional tourist attraction to this day.

Hike from Lauterbrunnen to Trümmelbach Falls or Staubbach Falls

As we already mentioned, the valley in Lauterbrunnen is known as “The Valley of 72 Waterfalls”. The Trümmelbach waterfall is the most famous, perhaps as it just so happens to be the biggest underground waterfall in Europe. The hike between the city centre and this marvellous natural wonder is only 0.5 kilometres and is part of a circular route through Gimmelwald and Murren.

Trümmelbach Falls is one of the region’s highlights. With 20,000 litres of water thundering down every second, the Falls is truly a spectacular sight – and sound! Additionally, one of Lauterbrunnen’s most popular hikes leads to Staubbach Falls. The 600-metre trail runs from the town to the picturesque 300-metre-high waterfall. Indeed, the Staubbach is the third-highest waterfall in Switzerland. It got its name from the fog that is created when the water plummets down – Staub is German for powder. You could easily combine this short but sweet hike with a visit to the nearby Trümmelbach Falls.

Visit Interlaken

The great thing about Lauterbrunnen is its connections to cities like Interlaken, Gimmelwald, Murren and Wengen. All these destinations are only about an hour away by train. Interlaken especially is worth a visit when you’re in Switzerland. Located only 12 kilometres from Lauterbrunnen, this beloved destination is perfect for a day excursion and is a great starting point for many hikes. The city itself is beautiful, set as it is next to the lakes Brienz and Thun.

One of the most popular activities in Interlaken is to take the cable way to Harder Kulm. The view from there is absolutely stunning. Visit the café at the top and admire the city while sipping on a delicious cappuccino. 

Explore the Idyllic Town Murren

If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of modern city life, the traffic-free town of Murren is just right. The tiny settlement lies on the edge of a cliff. Visitors can take the train, or opt for a pretty steep hike up to the town. Once there, all travellers are rewarded with magnificent views of the Big Three. Murren is the perfect gateway to several of the best hiking trails in the region. Its highlight is Murren Via Ferrata, a series of ladders, tightropes, and zip lines on the side of the cliff. Definitely not for the faint-hearted! Kicking back in one and enjoying the view from the safety of one of Murren’s picturesque cafés is sure to bring your heart rate back down. For more exploring, you can also take the cable way to Birg or Schilthorn from here.

Go on an Excursion to Jungfraujoch

One of the most popular day excursion destinations near Lauterbrunnen is Jungfraujoch. Known as the “Top of Europe,” it perches at the breathtaking heights of 3,454 metres. It may not be the highest point in Europe, but the highest-lying station and post office in the continent are located here – plus the views are spectacular! On the train journey through Kleine Scheidegg and Wengen, 5-minute stops allow you to hop out off the carriage, stretch your legs and snap a few pics.

Once at Jungfraujoch, you can admire ice sculptures in the ice palace or explore the Jungfrau-Panorama, a theatre built in the IMAX style. A jaw-dropping view of the Aletsch Glacier and the surrounding Alps can be enjoyed from the Sphinx Observatory, an international research facility.    

Take the Train Through the Eiger Glacier

This little tip is brought to you by happy accidents! We were already in the Wengen area and wanted to take the train to Jungfraujoch. Unfortunately (or fortunately), we got on the wrong train and only realised our mistake at the last station. However, we had absolutely no regrets – the views in the Eiger Glacier convinced us it was worth it! If you do plan this trip into your itinerary, make sure to secure a window seat.

Lauterbrunnen Conclusion

Lauterbrunnen is a wonderful, diverse travel destination filled with numerous adventures. Hiking through gorgeous mountainous landscapes and exploring the idyllic cities and picturesque towns were our personal highlights.

The valley lives up to its name, “The Valley of 72 Waterfalls”. Combine Staubbach Falls and Trümmelbach into one hike and be sure not to miss out!

Other incredible destinations are Interlaken and Murren. Both are ideal for hiking in the Swiss mountains. In Murren you can also take the cableway to a viewing platform and admire the Big Three. Alternatively, soak in the view like a bird, gliding through the valley.

Overall, Lauterbrunnen is a wonderful travel destination that should definitely be on your bucket list!   

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